Soul Calibur V PlayStation 3
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Released on 03-Feb-2012
“A tale of souls and swords, eternally retold”
Soul Calibur V, the newest installment of the multi-million selling weapons-based fighting series. Delivering exhilarating 3D fighting mechanics, breathtaking visuals, and new characters as well as expanded online and character creation modes, Soul Calibur V is poised to become the pre-eminent fighting game experience of 2012.
Developed by the legendary Project Soul team, Soul Calibur V picks up 17 years after the events of Soul Calibur IV with new heroes and returning warriors clashing in an epic showdown between good and evil. The tale of Patroklos, son of Sophitia Alexandra, unfolds as his family’s destiny intertwines with the Soul swords. With the series’ revolutionary 8-way run, allowing for true 3D movement during matches, refined battle systems, and stunning graphics, Soul Calibur V is for anyone looking for a knock-down, drag-out fight.
Chosen by history, a man becomes a warrior. Engraved into history, a warrior becomes a hero.
Ezio Auditore from the critically acclaimed Assassin’s Creed series will be a playable guest character in Soul Calibur V. This monumental collaboration will let players control Ezio and his wide range of assassination tools including:
- A Roman Longsword
- Hidden gun
- His trademark Hidden blade.
We recently got to interview Hisaharu Tago, producer of Soulcalibur V and he has shed some light on the upcoming sequel to one of the most championed beat-em-up franchises in the gaming universe! Read on to see what he had to say!
For the benefit of our readers could you please introduce yourself and tell us your role on the production of Soulcalibur V?
I am Hisaharu Tago, producer on Soulcalibur V.
Can you tell us what the goal was for your team when you set out to create the next Soulcalibur? What was your motivation?
The most important goal with Soulcalibur V was to create a weapons-based fighting game that players can enjoy fighting with. Specifically, the director Odashima-san (his twitter account is @Daishi_calibur) had some great ideas and our goal was to realize those. What motivates us is that we want to do our best for the fans that spoke out for the creation of Soulcalibur V and gave the project team a chance to come back.
Soulcalibur V is set quite sometime after Soulcalibur IV. With such an iconic roster of characters, was there any fear that fans may reject some of the new characters, or dislike the fact that their favourites have aged?
We’re confident about being able to make all the characters very Soulcalibur in style, whether they’re iconic characters, new characters or characters who’ve aged. We weren’t worried about this at all, and in fact we’ve almost made it a reality already.
What's happened between the end of Soulcalibur IV and the beginning of Soulcalibur V that leads to the Soul Edge sword?
In a way, the characters from Soulcalibur IV lived purely for their own purposes, without becoming obsessed by the existence of Soul Calibur and Soul Edge.
In regards to the new characters in Soulcalibur V, some of them are swiftly wrapped up in Soul Calibur and Soul Edge and become their next victims, while others have lived without knowing of their existence. Between Soulcalibur IV and V there are many dramas, and we would like to have the chance to talk about them in “another” Soulcalibur.
A lot of people had a lot of fun with SCIV's character creation mode. Will we see something like this again, and if so, will it be expanded upon in any way?
Regarding the character creation mode, we can definitely say that in Soulcalibur V it has been expanded in terms of quality and quantity. We want you to enjoy the world of Soulcalibur by creating your own favourite characters!
Previous Soulcalibur games have featured special guest characters, including Spawn, Heihachi and some Star Wars crossovers. Is this something we'll see with Soulcalibur V?
We recognize that the guest character is just as important a gameplay feature as the character creation mode in Soulcalibur V. We promise to have at least one special guest character, and we promise to announce details in the near future.
The Tower of Lost Souls consumed many players with its fiendish challenges. Do you plan to torment us with it again?
We didn’t mean to torment players with it, but if we did then we need to take a good look at whether the balancing was wrong.
Deep gameplay elements, as represented by the character creation mode for example, are a unique feature of the Soulcalibur series, and of course Soulcalibur V has these kinds of elements. However, personally I would like players to enjoy fighting battles because of the new battle systems and communication functions that we’ve implemented.
What are some of the challenges in creating a fighting game deep enough for serious fight fans, but accessible enough for casual players?
When I became producer on the game, I saw Odashima-san’s presentation about the new battle systems. What he wanted to do was narrow down the core gameplay elements to some of the attack and defence moves by simplifying things to do with the player’s skill level, and develop a more tolerant game system so that players can always fight well regardless of how skilled they are.
This is something that’s easy to say but difficult to realize. We have a team that plays the game every day and works on the balancing, but it’s definitely very challenging.
Soulcalibur V will be 'lighter, faster and more elegant' than previous games. What does this mean for the core gameplay? Can we expect a radical overhaul or something more subtle?
When compared to Soulcalibur IV, this is a radical change, but when compared to the previous Soulcalibur games it’s more of a subtle adjustment. One of the features that’s an important element in Soulcalibur is “spacing”. “Faster” is not just about an increase in tempo during battle, but also about that enhanced “spacing” achieved by adding Quick Move, an idea that lets you move quickly. As for the elegance, in Soulcalibur IV it was very difficult to get the timing right to execute Critical Finish. So in the end, Critical Finish was the flashiest move that players wanted to see most, but they weren’t able to.
In Soulcalibur V, instead of Critical Finish, the flashiest attack is “Critical Edge”. We’ve solved the problems we had with Critical Finish so players can execute Critical Edge relatively easily and more frequently. “More elegant” means not only that players can use Critical Edge, but also that players can turn the tide of the game by executing Critical Edge more frequently.
Originally, this concept was implemented in Soul Edge (released in 1997 in Europe for PlayStation) so you could say it’s a subtle improvement, but it’s definitely more of a radical change compared to Soulcalibur IV.
Can you tell all of our readers why they should preorder Soulcalibur V right now?
Unfortunately I can’t give away any more detailed information about the game itself right now, but please look out for updates. That said, generally, in the fighting game genre, the players who buy the game early are the ones who keep winning, so pre-order to make sure you get your hands on Soulcalibur V as early as you can!
Warner Bros Interactive Entertainment and WaterTower Music have announced the original soundtrack (OST) for the new title The Lord of the Rings: War in the North is set to be released.
Featuring 19 tracks adding emotion and resonance to the game, the OST was recorded at the famous Abbey Road studios in London and includes performances by the London Philharmonic Orchestra and award-winning composer Inon Zur and is set for release on November 1st.
Zur commented: "I always dreamed to be a part of this franchise and when this dream came true, I was extremely motivated to tell the emotional story of this dark heroic adventure and its captivating characters."
Meanwhile, Namco Bandai recently announced its new fighting game SoulCalibur V Collector's Edition is set to feature an art book, soundtrack CD, making-of DVD and bonus DLC as standard, as a way of saying thank you to fans of series.
Namco Bandai launches UK SoulCalibur V cosplay contest
Namco Bandai is giving players the chance to dress as their favourite SoulCalibur characters and participate in a special cosplay contest for the UK.
To celebrate the upcoming launch of SoulCalibur V, the gaming giant is calling for gamers to dress up as Ivy, Kilik, Sophitia, Xianghua or other members of the SoulCalibur cast and send in their best photos.
Entries will then be judged by a panel including members of the Namco Bandai Partners UK community team and leading British cosplayer Laura Sindall, with one lucky winner to be picked out.
The cosplay champion will be given the opportunity to feature in a London photo shoot on January 28th with a top fashion photographer, as well as winning a copy of SoulCalibur V and a PlayStation 3 on which to play it.
SoulCalibur V will also launch on Xbox 360 when it hits stores in February 2012 and will be released both in a standard edition and in a special collector's set.
The game will introduce many new characters to the series and will even feature a guest appearance by Ezio Auditore of Assassin's Creed fame.
Soul storyAfter a break of almost four years on home consoles, Soul Calibur V brings the popular weapons-based historical fantasy fighting series up to date with a new story, returning and fresh characters, refined battle systems, improved visuals, plus expanded online and character creation modes.
Kicking off 17 years after Soul Calibur IV, the story continues the tale of the two swords, the legendary blade of evil Soul Edge, and Soul Calibur, the holy blade later designed to create a balance. It follows the journey of Patroklos, the latest character to wield the cursed weapon, in what leads to an epic showdown between good and evil.
With more emphasis on the single player story mode than in previous series entries, Soul Calibur V's campaign is longer than usual for a fighting game. Featuring plenty of characters and cinematic cutscenes between fights, which take place across 20 gorgeous backdrops, it does a really good job of introducing the game's characters and fighting styles by switching player control between a good chunk of the roster.
SwordplaySoul Calibur V's action is as extravagant and over-the-top as fans would expect, but its fighting system has been reworked to offer quicker and smoother combat, removing the sluggish gaps found between moves in previous instalments, when the gameplay was arguably a bit too heavy, especially online, with players not feeling an instant reaction to their moves.
There's plenty of care and imagination evident in the game's varied weaponry, which largely dictates the fighting style of each character, with spears used for jabbing from distance, nunchuks for getting in close and giant hammers that are awkward but brutally effective.
Speed, lateral movement and carefully timed single blows, rather than long combos, are the key to success. The defensive game has evolved to introduce a quick side step move, while the basic guard button operates as it used to, with players needing to block incoming attacks at the correct height, and requiring precise timing to parry or counter moves.
Masters of battleSoul Calibur V features a character levelling system which works across its various game modes, including training and arcade, to rank up your fighter while also unlocking customisation options and items, most of which are used in the character creation mode, which sees players select a basic fighting style or character template and fiddle with the presets to make their own combatant.
In series tradition, Soul Calibur V also features a guest character from outside the franchise. Following in the footsteps of Star Wars' Yoda and Darth Vader, and most recently God of War's Kratos, is Assassin's Creed star Ezio. A rounded fighter who's powerful from far, mid and close-range, he has a number of tricks up his sleeve, including his trademark hidden blade, a crossbow and a Roman longsword.
From our limited play time with Soul Calibur V, it's clear the game puts up a great fight. With quicker and smoother combat than ever before, and without losing any of its trademark style, it's also set to be a more immediate and accessible experience than its predecessors.
Stage of History
It's no big secret that fighting games have returned to the forefront in recent years. While it once seemed as though the genre was destined to remain a curio of a bygone era, the release of Street Fighter IV resulted in an inundation of outstanding new games like BlazBlue and Dissidia: Final Fantasy, as well as retro revivals like Marvel vs. Capcom 3 and Mortal Kombat. But if all these fighting game characters were to feature in a massive battle royale - where Ryu could dragon-punch Sub-Zero in the face, and Paul Phoenix could compare hairstyling tips with Cloud - who would be left standing?
For our money, it would be a character from Namco's long running Soulcalibur series, and while tiger uppercuts and torpedo dives do respectable damage, nothing says you're dead quite like being hit in the face with a demonic soul-rending claymore. This is the premise by which Soulcalibur has always lived, and while other fighting games prefer to go hand-to-hand with the odd fireball thrown in for good measure, the Calibur dress code states that "if you can carry it, then you can wield it". And for the imminent release of Soulcalibur V, a whole new generation is waiting to test their mettle.
Upon entering the new select screen for the first time, Soulcalibur veterans will recognise the familiar faces of wandering samurai Mitsurugi, the ever buxom Ivy, and an "Elvis lookalike wielding a pair of nunchuks" in the form of Maxi. All of these characters retain their classic hack-and-slash moves in addition to some subtle changes. But while the allure of the familiar will be hard for some to resist, the more spontaneous among us will want to sample one of the new characters, such as Taki's ninja apprentice, Kilik's gluttonous successor, and Sophita's twin children Patroklos and Pyrrha who were separated at the age of three.
Rather than two halves of a locket or a matching pair of rings, the twins inherited their mother's sword and shield collection - which they weave through the air in a similarly distinctive style. But in terms of characters that use a completely different fighting force Soulcalibur V introduces a fortune teller named Viola who fights with a combination of finger-blades and a hovering crystal ball, as well as the mystical Z.W.E.I. who can summon his wolf spirit E.I.N. while wielding his tri-handled sword. And for Assassin's Creed fans, there's even the opportunity to build some hidden blade combos with the cloaked Ezio Auditore.
The improvements don't stop at the select screen either, and with a number of underlying system changes that are designed to make the game more balanced and competitive, this feels like the most refined Calibur yet. The most obvious addition is the new Critical Gauge that opens up a trio of advanced techniques as you both receive and deal damage. This includes Critical Edge super-moves that have Siegfried impaling his opponent on a row of jagged icicles, in addition to the flexible Brave Edge specials that dramatically expand your combo creation options.
Defensive players also have access to a revised Guard Impact that now takes a fraction of your Critical Gauge to perform, but as a trade-off, it can be used as a catch-all for high and low attacks. These new manoeuvres are rounded off with a new Just Guard that works similarly to the parry system from Street Fighter III, and a new Quick Step that lets you dodge and counter any predictable strikes with relative ease. And while this mechanical analysis may fly over the heads of fighting game virgins, suffice to say that Soulcalibur remains one of the most accessible fighters out there.
This focus on accessibility even stretches to the available game modes, and while our preview time was mostly limited to Arcade and Versus, we did get to sample some of the other single-player features. This included a Story mode that stars Patroklos as he searches for his lost sister and the fabled swords, a Quick Battle mode that lets you fight against a huge list of AI opponents while collecting over 400 titles, a Legendary Souls mode that houses some very tough battles, and a deep character Creation mode that lets you alter the fabric of any item of clothing.
But funky hats aside, our lasting impression of Soulcalibur V was that despite some welcome tweaks to the fighting formula and an expanded lineage of characters, it's still the same game we know and love. It's just now there's more layers of depth for those who want to put the hours into the training room and a more comprehensive mix of modes for casual players who just want a fun fighting game with impressive visuals. That's what we expect the full game to deliver, and that's why February 3rd can't come soon enough.
There was no stopping FIFA 12 in the UK charts as the blockbuster football game topped the sales rankings for yet another week.
The EA Sports title was once again the top-selling title in Britain for the sixth straight week, making it a total of eight weeks atop the GfK-ChartTrack rankings overall.
FIFA 12 has already been crowned the highest-grossing sports videogame in UK history and just edged out Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 to take top honours this week.
Gamers who pick up Namco Bandai's new fighting game SoulCalibur V when it hits stores this week can already look forward to several batches of downloadable content scheduled for release in February 2012.
Included in the first pack are character customisation items such as bikinis, wings and face paint, as well as extra music tracks taken from the original Soul Blade and SoulCalibur games.
The second DLC batch hits on February 14th and includes breast plates, kimonos and animal heads plus music from the second and third SoulCalibur titles, while the third pack on February 28th features yet more new items and songs from SoulCalibur IV and SoulCalibur: Broken Destiny.
SoulCalibur V is set to pack in more gameplay features, modes and characters than ever before, with a roster including special guest Ezio Auditore de Firenze, star of the Assassin's Creed videogames.
It will be released in a special Collector's Edition that includes an art book and prints, a soundtrack CD, bonus customisation content and more.
Namco Bandai has marked the launch of its new fighting game SoulCalibur V by commissioning some stunning street art in London.
The gamemaker teamed up with famous graffiti artist Jim Rockwell and his team of aerosol artisans at ENDoftheLINE to create a huge promotional mural on the 16-metre Great Eastern Street wall in Shoreditch.
It depicts classic SoulCalibur villain Nightmare facing down newcomer and protagonist Patroklos, with guest character Ezio Auditore from Assassin's Creed also prominently featured.
Set 17 years after the previous instalment, SoulCalibur V introduces numerous brand new characters, modes and gameplay features, with including the innovative Critical Edge and Quick Move systems.
A Collector's Edition will also be made available that includes in-game bonuses and collectible memorabilia, such as a soundtrack CD, art book and making-of videos.
Some of the stars of the new fighting game SoulCalibur V have been immortalised by being engraved into a mountain in Tanum, Sweden.
To celebrate the launch of the eagerly-awaited Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 title, Namco Bandai called on master stone engraver Goran Andersson to create an amazing granite carving of samurai warrior Mitsurugi and the sword-wielding Pyrrha.
Located close to a UNESCO World Heritage Site filled with Bronze Age stone carvings, the engraving was described by Andersson as by far the most complex he has ever undertaken.
Lee Kirton, marketing director at Namco Bandai, said: "Everyone knows the SoulCalibur characters are among the hardest fighters in gaming - so we've decided to immortalise them in granite for thousands of years."
Namco also recently teamed up with graffiti artist Jim Rockwell to create a giant SoulCalibur V mural in London's Shoreditch area, depicting Patroklos, Nightmare and guest star Ezio Auditore in battle.
It will help to ramp up anticipation for the latest entry in the series, which features a host of fresh characters, new special moves and a diverse array of modes.
Fancy a grand? Reckon you're the business when it comes to fighting games? Pick up the awesome SoulCalibur V, out today for Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3, and you could earn yourself a thousand notes and the respect of gamers everywhere by taking part in SoulCalibur Impact 2012.
The tournament, set up by SoulCalibur publisher Namco Bandai, runs across Europe and culminates in a grand final on March 17th. That's also the date for the UK qualifying heat, with winners plunging straight into the grand final at the same venue, against winners from across Europe. The champion goes home with a pocket full of money and a life-sized replica Soul Edge trophy.
St Stephen's, Rosslyn Hill in London is the place to be, at 12pm. Even if you don't fancy registering to compete, Namco Bandai is promising lots of other entertainment including free play sessions on previous SoulCalibur titles, a DJ, live performances and free refreshments. There'll be contests and giveaways throughout the day as well.
By our reckoning that means you've got just over a month and a half to pick up SoulCalibur V and get practicing. So what are you waiting for?
Role-playing epic Final Fantasy XIII-2 has become the first new release of the year to top the UK all-formats chart.
The latest instalment in Square Enix's legendary series toppled the long-reigning FIFA 12 from the summit of the GfK-ChartTrack rankings, emulating the chart-topping debut of its direct predecessor Final Fantasy XIII.
It was one of a number of new releases to make a big splash this week, with second place going to Konami's compilation title Metal Gear Solid HD Collection, which features three of the most popular entries in the classic stealth series.
Next week should see another batch of new releases making their chart debuts, including fantasy blockbuster Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning, comic book shooter The Darkness II and quirky relationship drama Catherine.
The stage of history
Originally released in 1997, Namco's Soul Blade was the first game to bring a knife to a fist-fight. At a time when Street Fighter was throwing down in 2D side-on brawls, and Tekken players were side-stepping their way to becoming the Kings of Iron First, Namco decided to take a punt on something a little different: a fully 3D, arena-based fighting game in which each character wielded a deadly weapon.
After an incredible boom fighting games fell by the wayside, but Namco soldiered on, pumping out a new SoulCalibur every few years - but the lack of changes to the formula bogged the series down. Fast forward to 2008 and Street Fighter IV revitalised the genre, and now Namco is stepping back into the arena with SoulCalibur V on Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3. And thanks to a few smart tweaks to the series' traditional gameplay, it's arguably the best Calibur to date.
Get the edge
The most obvious addition is the introduction of a comeback mechanic similar to Street Fighter's Super and Ultra Combo moves. SoulCalibur's version is called the 'Critical Edge' and is represented on screen by a bar that slowly fills every time your fighter lands an attack or takes a hit. Once the bar is filled you can input the appropriate commands and watch as your character unleashes a highly-damaging, flashy move.
The most interesting part of SoulCalibur's new mechanic is that it also allows players to spend their meter when it's only half full. This 'Brave Edge' attack delivers a less-powerful but still damaging blow that modifies the properties of the regular move that preceded it, usually by making it safer to use or giving it an extra-sting. This is particularly exciting for players who love putting combos together, who'll almost certainly find it in their interest to spend time in the game's fully-featured training mode figuring out which strings of attacks are most rewarding in terms of damage.
The second major tweak comes in the way blocking is implemented in SoulCalibur V. In the previous game, relying too much on blocking was punished by the 'Soul Crush', which meant weapons would break after a certain amount of damage had been blocked. In this game, each character has been given a single move that can break through the enemy's guard in an instant, forcing cautious fighters to step out of their comfort zone. SoulCalibur V is also a faster paced game than its predecessors too, requiring players to make full use of side-stepping to evade attacks and often to exploit openings.
A new SoulCalibur also brings with it a handful of fresh characters to play with. These include Lexia, a young Chinese girl very capable of pulling off juggle combos and creating high-low mix-ups, Z.W.E.I., who's able to summon a white werewolf; Viola, a crystal ball-wielding witch and Ezio Auditore Da Firenze, star of Ubisoft's Assassin's Creed, who fills in the traditional guest character slot.
With always impeccable visuals, an epic soundtrack, full online play and a deep character creation mode, Namco Bandai's latest feature-rich SoulCalibur returns in fine form. Fans of the series will enjoy sinking hours into mastering the title, while newcomers and those who prefer a lighter fighting game experience will find their needs more than catered for. SoulCalibur V isn't one you should miss.
- Fast and furious battles.
- Beautiful visuals.
- Excellent cast of fighters.
- Cheesy story mode.
- Very cheesy voice acting.
- Fast and furious battles.
Soul Calibur V Hisaharu Tago Interview (12/09/2011)
Soul Calibur V producer Hisaharu Tago takes time out from polishing his swords to answer some questions about upcoming fighter, Soul Calibur V.…
OST release for The Lord of the Rings… (04/11/2011)
Warner Bros Interactive Entertainment and WaterTower Music have announced the original soundtrack (OST) for the new title The Lord of the Rings: War in the North is set to be released.…
Namco Bandai launches UK SoulCalibur … (08/12/2011)
Namco Bandai is giving players the chance to dress as their favourite SoulCalibur characters and participate in a special cosplay contest for the UK.…
Soul Calibur V - Preview (17/01/2012)
After a break of almost four years on home consoles, Soul Calibur V brings the popular weapons-based historical fantasy fighting series up to date with a new story, returning and fresh characters, ref…
It? no big secret that fighting games have returned to the forefront in recent years. And with the imminent release of Soulcalibur V, a whole new generation is waiting to test their mettle.…
FIFA 12 makes it six chart-topping we… (30/01/2012)
There was no stopping FIFA 12 in the UK charts as the blockbuster football game topped the sales rankings for yet another week.…
SoulCalibur V launch DLC plans announced (30/01/2012)
Gamers who pick up Namco Bandai's new fighting game SoulCalibur V when it hits stores this week can already look forward to several batches of downloadable content scheduled for release in February 20…
Graffiti art in London celebrates lau… (01/02/2012)
Namco Bandai has marked the launch of its new fighting game SoulCalibur V by commissioning some stunning street art in London.…
SoulCalibur V characters engraved int… (02/02/2012)
Some of the stars of the new fighting game SoulCalibur V have been immortalised by being engraved into a mountain in Tanum, Sweden.…
Fancy a grand? Reckon you're the business when it comes to fighting games? Pick up the awesome SoulCalibur 5, out today for Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3, and you could earn yourself a thousand notes and…
Final Fantasy XIII-2 soars to top of … (06/02/2012)
Role-playing epic Final Fantasy XIII-2 has become the first new release of the year to top the UK all-formats chart.…
Soul Calibur V - Review (07/02/2012)
Originally released in 1997, Namco's Soul Blade was the first game to bring a knife to a fist-fight. Fast forward and Namco is stepping back into the arena with SoulCalibur V on Xbox 360 and PlayStati…
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